Europe Stocks Little Changed as Utilities Gain Outweighs Energy

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European stocks ended the session little changed as a rally in utilities and technology shares outweighed a renewed selloff in the energy sector.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index slipped less than 0.1 percent at the close. Energy shares fell to their lowest level since November, while utilities and technology shares added at least 0.5 percent. The benchmark index trimmed its losses following stronger-than-expected U.S. monthly jobs data. The gauge is still down 4.1 percent from its high in May.

  • Data showed the U.S. economy added 222,000 jobs in June, more than forecast, while the jobless rate rose to 4.4 percent from a previous 16-year low. Both are indicators that the labor market remains healthy and should support continued increases in consumer spending.
  • Centrica Plc rallied 2.9 percent, leading utilities higher, after a report the U.K. utility has attracted the interest of a few bidders.
  • The Stoxx 600 oil & gas sector index fell 1.2 percent, tracking a drop in crude oil prices as a jump in U.S. output offset a slide in stockpiles.
  • Media stocks fell the most in the index. Exane analysts wrote in a note that most broadcasters are set to cut their advertising guidance for 2017 in the coming weeks as digital disruption progresses.

— With assistance by Elena Popina

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